Preparing for Winter

 

Dear John,

We are new to Spain and have heard conflicting reports on how bad the winters here are. In readiness what preparations are necessary to prepare my home for this coming winter?

Regards

Charles L. Jalon


Hi Charles,

Generally the winters in this area are not too bad, that is why we all come to live here but now that the heat of the summer is behind us it is worth spending a little time checking over your home in preparation for the winter ahead. Your property will normally supply the clues as to what might be going wrong and what items need attention.

The main problem areas include:

ROOFS – Get your builder to fix loose or replace missing tiles before water causes serious structural damage and before they harm someone. Cut back any overhanging trees that will drop leaves onto your roof.

VALLEYS, FLAT ROOFS, CHIMNEYS AND JUNCTIONS – Get your builder to check for damage to these areas, damage may not be obvious now but can cause internal dampness later.

DRAINS & GUTTERS - Stains on walls, plant growth around pipes and any gutters are clues that they may be leaking. Check that drains and any gullies are carrying away water effectively.

WALLS – Avoid any earth build-up at the base of walls as this could be the site of a damp problem. Keep any under floor ventilators clear. Ground level garden plants should be removed if damaging walls, blocking vents or drains.
If render is loose, crumbling or missing, get your builder to fix it. If damp is already getting in but the render looks fine, get your builder to check the joint where the roof tiles meet the walls, this being a common place for water to enter.

WATER & HEATING PIPES
- Ensure all water and heating pipes are properly lagged, particularly in older properties, especially in the under floor voids where they may be subjected to cold drafts. If you are going away keep the heating on low over night to avoid burst pipes.

WINDOWS AND EXTERNAL DOORS
- Make sure windows and external doors close properly. Fitting inexpensive draught excluders can really help to reduce your heating bills.

VENTILATION - Check your ventilation - especially bricks that allow air to circulate below the floor. Use a coat hangar or screw driver to clear out the holes that can get blocked with leaves and other garden debris

REPAINT EXTERIOR PAINTWORK
- Exposed walls and wooden windowsills need particular attention as they will bear the brunt of any frost damage.

SERVICE YOUR BOILER
– Switch on your central heating, does it still work, check for air in the radiators - if in doubt get your system checked by a competent plumber.

FLOODING – We all remember the last Guta Fria – did water enter your property then, what have you done to stop it this time.

It pays to inspect your home for clues of trouble spots on a regular basis whether the house is new or old. If problems such as dampness are caught early significant savings can be made.
A few minutes spent clearing weeds and debris, or a few euro’s spent carrying out minor repairs now may save thousands later.
It’s worth remembering to deal only with reputable tradesmen. Check out the references of anyone you are considering employing and do not make snap decisions on builders whatever the problem. Sudden bad weather often brings out the cowboys, keen to make a quick buck at the expense of vulnerable customers. especially when it comes to roof repairs.

John Phillips (F.I.A.S. F.A.B.E. M.I.B.C.O. F.F.B. M.R.S.H. C.M.W.O.B.O. M.B.I.M)
Construction Buena Vista

 

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Construction Buena Vista
Urb. Palmeria. Orba 03790

 

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0034 965 577 464 (office)

 

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Buena Vista Villas s.l.

Urb. Palmeria. Orba 03790

 

Please call us on

 

0034 965 577 464 (office)

 

0034 629 554 561 (mobile)

 

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